Beaches across Causeway Coast and Glens have been recognised for their excellence at the annual Beach and Marina Awards.
Benone Strand, Downhill Strand, Castlerock, West Strand in Portrush and Whiterocks have been awarded Blue Flags after achieving the highest standards for beach facilities, environmental management and water quality.
Ballycastle Marina has also received a Blue Flag, with Ballycastle Beach, Waterfoot and East Strand in Portrush achieving Seaside Awards from Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful.
Celebrating the success, Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Alderman Mark Fielding said: “The natural beauty of our coastline is world famous and it’s wonderful that so many of our beautiful seaside locations have been recognised through this internationally renowned awards scheme.
“These awards help to set a benchmark for standards and ensure residents and visitors find a clean, safe and well managed environment and enjoy the best possible experience along our stunning coastline.
“This success is a testament to our commitment to protecting the environment, the work of Council employees and the efforts of many volunteers who dedicate time and creativity to keep our coastline clean and welcoming.
“I would also take the opportunity to remind everyone to behave responsibly when visiting our beaches and beauty spots by placing litter in the available bins or taking it home, and by continuing to follow PHA guidelines.”
This year the Beach and Marina Awards aim to raise awareness of the benefits of a healthy marine environment and the positive connection between the outdoors and our physical and mental health. They also highlight how Northern Ireland’s blue spaces are something to take pride in, look after and enjoy.
Ian Humphreys, Chief Executive of Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, said, “The past year has restricted our ability to travel and meet people. Yet, we are fortunate to have such great local blue spaces right on our doorstep.
“All of us can be rightly proud of this beautiful place we call home. Behind every one of these special places are dedicated key workers whose effort all year round keeps these blue spaces in such excellent condition. These awards are a small way of saying thank you and recognising that we have so much to be proud of in our community”.